Margins up from 23% - 64% over 4 years

Sales increased by 25% year on over 5 years

“Some of the most effective training we did.”

Nick Earle, Former Global SVP, Sisco (now SVP, Global Field Operations at Virgin Hyperloop One)

Business & Challenge

Cisco is the worldwide leader in IT and networking services helping businesses transform how people connect, communicate, and collaborate.

The firm’s products were being commoditised by powerful competitors converging on their core business.

How We Helped

Working in collaboration with Cisco, we developed a competency grid of best practice consultative behaviours and then we developed and delivered a series of programmes.

Each element was rolled out globally across all vertical industry sectors, with tailored case studies for each.

The programme was designed to reframe the firm’s aspirations and deliver the changes needed to achieve some deeply ambitious goals:

“CSI is the only firm I have found globally that could manage this tough group” SVP EMEAR Edwin Paalvast

  • Developing integrated solutions (combining their market-leading products and basic services with expert advice on implementation and integration).
  • Developing two levels of advisory team to create customer credibility; one for IT and one for the rest of the Board to ensure business relevance and maintain their price premium.
  • Creating a common services consultative sales and deliver approach to pull through product business and increase customer loyalty.


CSI developed tailored customer capability maturity models reflecting the necessary governance, processes, people skills and technology required to achieve a competitive edge.

These are now used at all levels across Cisco globally to diagnose the gap between the customer’s current state and their aspirations. The impact of these is:

  • Increased margins from 23%-64% over 5 years
  • Sales increased by 25% year on year over 4 years
  • Their CEO awarded the services group A+, attributing some of the success to CSI’s skills and behaviour development programme.
“I worked extensively with CSI on the Trusted Advisor Account Acceleration work in Europe over the last couple of years. We targeted the Enterprise Sales teams (Product AM, Services AM and Delivery leads) and ran several extremely successful workshops in EMEA. Based on this success we asked CSI to also run courses in APJC. In my view, this work was some of the most effective training we did.”

Nick Earle, Former Global SVP, Cisco (now SVP, Global Field Operations at Virgin Hyperloop One)

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